A New Year Begins
And an Old Journal Ends

Two years ago Fran gave me this journal she made from offcuts from her senior thesis, which I've deeply treasured:

Handmade journal (cover), 5x10 inches, paper, cotton, acrylic paint; 2020.

She selected colours and styles that would resonate for the cover.

Handmade journal, first page, with inscription and “2020”[1] in floral doodles on 5x10 inches, paper, ballpoint and micron inks, 2020. Lumix LX100 f/1.7, ev +0.7, 1/125s, ISO 200, WB: cloudy; lightened, transformed, cropped, scaled in gimp.

Wrote her wishes in one of my favourite colours, purple;

Handmade journal, last drawing by date, 5x10 inches, paper, graphite & micron inks from photo ref taken by artist, 30 (pencil) and 31 (inks) dec2022. Lumix LX100 f/1.7, ev +0.7, 1/125s, ISO 200, WB: cloudy; lightened, transformed, cropped, scaled in gimp.

And included a couple of envelopes in the back cover (not shown, but they're perfectly ordinary:) for me to keep little treasures in.[2]

Handmade journal, final sheet, 5x10 inches, paper, & micron inks, worked on periodically & finally “completed” dec312022. The triangular motif comes out of a registration mark printed on the paper & worked into the design. Lumix LX100 f/1.7, ev +0.7, 1/125s, ISO 200, WB: cloudy; lightened, transformed, cropped, scaled in gimp.

But of course, no journal is a good gift unless it's filled, and I had only 4 pages, really, to go as of 30dec: one of my goals for 2022 was to fill this up. So, since we were doing one of our favourite things together, hanging out and drawing at a coffee shop, I made a pencil of one of the many, many bunny photos I sent her during 2022. The following day, New Year's Eve, I inked it, and started on a squirrel picture she sent me (while we were drawing.) That's not quite done, nor are those two last-but-one pages, but I did add some more doodles to the very last page while listening to HBomberGuy's latest ...in which he mourns, among other things[3] how the sands of time erase history. Even seemingly minor histories, like who made a little video game sound effect.

Or, in this case, a little journal—trivial in the larger scheme of things, but vital to me as a physical manifestation of Fran and my making art together. Likely it too will be lost in the sands of time, though who knows? Art profs have this annoying habit of requiring their students to buy archival paper, and this is indeed the good stuff—more than capable, with a bit of care, of outlasting me by half a millennium.

Perhaps it will get re-purposed for some sort of collage or palimpsest!

[1]So cool from a graphic design/pattern POV, and so crappy in actual point...c'est la vie

[2]Since I hadn't filled them by that penultimate day, I ended up putting in a collage piece she gave me and the to-go menu of the coffee shop where we were drawing.

[3]Lying. For some reason, I can't think why, H is just not into lying!